Contributing to negligence in your product liability case

Product Liability | October 10, 2014

Illinois consumers have a reasonable expectation that the products they buy and the medicines they consume will not injure them when normally used. Throughout the years, Illinois courts have come to expect that farmers, manufacturers and others who introduce items for sale into the stream of commerce will exercise care to ensure that those products are reasonably safe for use under normal conditions.

But what happens if a consumer is injured by a product as a result of not using it under normal conditions? For example, imagine a home destroyed in a fire caused a coffee pot with a built-in auto shutoff function. The homeowner admits to having used the pot twice per day despite the manufacturer’s recommendation of using it only once per day. Most people would agree that using a coffee pot twice daily is not an unreasonably normal usage of that product.

Fortunately, Illinois law provides such protections for plaintiffs based on the proportionate fault of the parties involved. Sometimes known as contributory negligence, this legal concept means that a plaintiff can still recover portions of their claim for damages as long as they are not 50 percent at fault for the proximate cause of the injury.

Obtaining compensation in defective products cases requires a knowledgeable attorney skilled in identifying the levels of negligence by both sides. The attorneys working at our downtown Chicago offices have over 25 years of experience handling product liability cases throughout Chicago and northeastern Illinois.

Our firm is committed to providing you a free claim evaluation to assess the merits and viability of your case. If we decide to represent you we will apply our extensive experience in complex litigation to help you achieve the most favorable outcome available. We also have Spanish speakers at every level of our law firm.